Some years ago the New Yorker ran a cartoon lampooning the ideology of radical inclusiveness. A preacher had finished his sermon and out of their church’s policy of tolerance and inclusion gave equal time to another preacher who was standing nearby – the Devil.
Radical inclusion has become the default gospel in many churches. But the word radical doesn’t really speak to what is actually going on.’Mindless’ inclusion would be better. There are any number of ways in which inclusivity can be demonstrated to be a good thing. But a radical inclusivity which is unable to make distinctions between what should be included and what should be excluded simply leaves people vulnerable, wide open to manipulation and worse. Those seeking to infiltrate and compromise the good often hide behind the facade of inclusion and tolerance
At the heart of the matter for the church and theology is the relation between love, tolerance and inclusion. To be radically tolerant and inclusive today is the definition of love. But this is wrong and dangerously so. Real love seeks the good of the other and in doing so learns what must be excluded for the sake of the other. To radically include all voices within the church and to give them equal value is to open the door to that hateful deceiver whose stock and trade is to use mindless tolerance and inclusivity as a cloak that covers evil.